This collaboration between Nelly, the hot rapper from St Louis and the hot chanteuse Kelly Rowland from Destiny's Child is already recognised as one of the best black pop records of recent years... 'Dilemma' has also been the most successful commercial single in Britain in the last 6 months with sales of 750,000 units.Yes, it really does say "black pop records". Is that actually a thing people say? If anyone ever asks you who was the first member of Destiny's Child to top the chart outside the group, remember this record which supposedly became a surprise US airplay hit before they'd even decided to release it as a single though one wonders where broadcasters got the radio edit from. It is evidently true though that the single had made it to the top of the Billboard chart before the video was ready which might be why they rushed it and made that infamous blooper with the text message in Microsoft Excel. Perhaps most dramatically of all, the success of this persuaded Destiny's Child manager Matthew Knowles to prioritise Rowland's solo career of that of his daughter Beyoncé during a group hiatus.
As a record in its own right, Dilemma is a bit of a strange beast, a very obvious attempt at a crossover RnB hit that seems to lack the courage of its own convictions as Nelly keeps dropping in shout-outs to the various coasts in a song that's supposed to be about him having it off with a woman who's already attached. It kind of spoils the mood a bit for me but presumably for some people it made it acceptable for the them to listen to a ballad and helped the song to sell very well but 2002 standards, as well as keeping the much-anticipated Justin Timberlake track off the top.
Nelly also appears on: Now 47, 49 [with City Spud], 52, 59, 60 [with Tim McGraw], 61, 77, 85
Kelly Rowland also appears on: Now 69, 73 [with David Guetta]
Available on: Now That's What I Call Feel Good